Read at Triple Your Normal Speed with One of These Five Chrome Extension

They say that the typical person is capable of reading at a speed of 300 words per minute. Given the sheer volume of news and other information thrown at us every day, that just is not fast enough to read more than a tithe of the available material.

I am actually fine with that, but others have turned to speed reading apps to keep up with the deluge. They’re using apps to read ebooks faster, and as eBook Friendly reminded me today, you can also use browser extensions to read web content faster.

I used to use an Instapaper feature for this (that let me combine a lean back reading experience with speed reading) but I can see the merits of speed reading in your web browser.

Here are five free Chrome extensions you can use to read faster.

1. Spreed

2. ShiftReader

3. Sprint Reader

4. Reeader

5. Read Fast

The extensions work in different ways, and it’s worth your time to try them all, just in case.

Several of the extensions highlight a word on a page one at a time, forcing you to advance with the highlighted word and thus read faster. Others such as Spreed will extract the content and flash it at you one word at a time.

I don’t use any of them because, frankly, I have too many things winding me far too tight. But I would love to hear about the speed reading tools you use.

What works for you?

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.

3 Comments

  1. Allen F6 November, 2020

    The main problem I have with any method of speed reading is ‘stray thoughts’ caused by the story that then cause a “wait-what?” as the speed reader continued to zip along – leaving me ever further behind. With a book/ebook I can have my stray thought, reread the last line or three and get back into the story. (Yeah, I don’t do audio books for the same reason …)

    Reply
  2. tired7 November, 2020

    This whole idea is stupid. If you’re trying to spend less time with what you read you’re also spending less time thinking about it and then what was the point? Most news articles are trash anyway to fill a 24 hour cycle. It is much more rewarding to simply be far more careful about what you choose to read than to try to just read faster. I subscribe to the local newspaper and take the time to read and think about the articles there. People need to spend more time thinking and less time mindlessly devouring garbage on the internet.

    Also speed reading was debunked decades ago.

    Reply
  3. Dan Holloway7 November, 2020

    It’s a really interesting subject. As you probably know I have the dubious honour of being a 3 times European Speed Reading Champion. The technique I use is nothing like you’ll find in most apps and is very simple – using more efficient eye movements (most of these apps flash words in the same place which totally misses the way that eyes take in information). There’s a great video by Tim Ferriss which is really simple but really informative. Quartz also made a great documentary, which unfortunately features me, but also has some good stuff about research at the University of Wuppertal, where they have found that the technique I use, and which Tim Ferriss advocates, is actually the most effective, and can be used to improve a lot of people’s reading speed – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1xvo0sWxOg&t=55s

    Reply

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